Resources Wisely

A conversation on financial
stewardship skills

The Ivy Chia Achievement Award in Financial Planning and Management supports students in the Bachelor of Finance programme. Ms Ivy Chia is an individual donor.


Ms Ivy Chia,
Financial Services Consultant

Dear Ernest,

Did you gain practical financial skills during your studies?

In my case, being skilled in finance has enabled me to be a responsible steward of money, an important resource.

I enjoy financial stewardship for two reasons. The first is personal: being wise and prudent with my own resources, so that I can improve standards of living for myself and those around me.

The second is that I am able to use my skills to help others. Planning people’s finances has been one fulfilling career, where I engage both mind and heart.

I analyse the markets and offer objective advice while understanding people from all walks of life deeply to plan the best way forward for them.

It sometimes feels like I am right beside my clients throughout their life journey. We were once strangers but have now become friends!

Ernest, as a young person just entering the workforce, you will encounter many mountains to climb. Try your best to do the right thing. It sounds simple, but it is actually not easy in the real world. If you fail at first, don’t give up and do the next right thing.

Ivy Chia Achievement Award in Financial Planning and Management Recipient

Ernest Neo,
Graduate, Bachelor of Science in Finance

Dear Ms Chia,

Yes, I did gain many practical skills studying finance at SUSS. We learnt a lot about the finance sector, such as equities, bonds and derivatives. Yet more importantly, we learnt to be money-wise.

For example, many things were de-mystified: the lessons on taxes, CPF and retirement planning were very accessible. I feel more empowered now as I have the skills and agency to better manage what I earn, save and spend.

As for my career, I am lucky to be currently employed in banking operations. Since the pandemic, many of us graduates fear that we will not be able to find jobs. I kept sending resumes to companies and did so non-stop for seven months!

Looking at the bigger picture, the pandemic has exposed great vulnerabilities around the world. I hope that from now, leaders of corporations will take green investing and sustainable finance seriously. I wish to continue my learning in these areas, as I believe that it is time to confront these global resource challenges.

I am so appreciative of your support, and I won’t take for granted your advice on doing the right thing.

Thank you!

5 Stewardship

Ms Chia shares a set of stewardship principles – simplified into “5Is” – gained from her experience of being in the industry for 25 years.

1. Integrity
Conduct life and business in the right way

2. Industriousness
Be a hardworking leader for others to follow

3. Integration
Avoid a fragmented life; rather, integrate your values with your work and personal life

4. Implementation
Whatever you believe in, create a system for that and execute it

5. Improvisation
Many unexpected things can happen; respond authentically, be adaptable and learn quickly

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